Apple is secretly researching and developing fuel-cells for MacBooks, iPhones and iPads in partnership with British firm called Intelligent Energy, according to a recent report by Daily Mail.

The new fuel-cell technology converts chemical energy from fuel stored in the cells into electricity, which is said to be eco-friendly as well as highly efficient.

In other words, the energy stored in fuel cells could yield enormous battery charge that would be capable of powering future iPhones and iPads, and keep them running on a single charge for days or even weeks.

The report clarifies that Intelligent Energy has secretly signed a deal with a major international electronics company, whose name has been confirmed as "Apple", by an unknown source close to the company.

In another interesting development, former Apple product specialist Joe O'Sullivan has been hired by the UK firm as its chief operating officer.

Besides, the firm has opened a new office in San Jose, which is located just down the road from Apple's headquarters in Cupertino, California.

Apple recently filed its own patent regarding its research and development work with fuel-cell powered Macbooks and smartphones.

One such patent filed in the US Patent and Trademark Office points to hydrogen cell technology to convert hydrogen and oxygen into water and electrical energy. The technology aims to eliminate the existing bulky and heavy battery, besides providing long lasting battery-life for smartphones, laptops and notebooks.

With several rumours suggesting a potential partnership between Apple and Tesla (the maker of hydrogen-cell for cars), and its CEO Elon Musk acknowledging that discussions did take place with Apple, it is almost certain that Apple is planning to acquire Tesla's new battery plant, according to Bloomberg.

It is not clear how the confidential information was leaked online or how Apple's plans became public. Nevertheless, Apple seems to be headed in the right direction, following recent complaints from iPhone users regarding the device's unsatisfactory battery performance.